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Culture, a Major Obstacle To Business

Morale was high at the US based contracting company. They had just been invited to join a consortium of companies that had pre-qualified for a big public works tender in Central Asia. The offer came via e-mail. After concluding the initial round of correspondence with their counterparts, a two man team made up of one senior engineer and one business development exec were sent to Europe to meet up with their potential partners and sign the consortium agreement.

The trip started well, as they were well received by their hosts at the airport, guided to their hotel and were pleased to see that a well planned itinerary awaited them. Two mid- level managers took them out to dinner that night, and a jovial relationship was established.

The next day, still dazzled by the late night and effects of jet lag the US team met with the senior execs of the consortium and gave a strong power point presentation as to their capabilities, past business performance and key deliverables. Everyone was all smiles at lunch, and things were very cordial in the afternoon during the contract negotiations. The US team e-mailed back the tentative consortium agreement late afternoon and was treated to a special evening of entertainment and fine dining “Asian” style by the corporate execs.

Next morning, they received confirmation from the legal department at corporate that the agreement was acceptable and that they could go ahead and sign. The agreement was signed, pictures were taken and small gifts were exchanged. After having generated so much good will in such a good time, it was decided that the new consortium partners should visit the government office which was organizing the tender in order to introduce the US company.

Up to that time, the whole process had been text book perfect. The meeting with the government authorities went ahead as planned, but it was not possible to gauge the results of the meeting from the US company’s point of view. They had also received some conflicting news from the Government officials. The pre-qualification for tender had been cancelled, and the process would start over again.

Their new partners assured them that this was a normal occurrence for this part of the world. Other disturbing news started to trickle down as comments of the need to make facilitation payments arose. The US team automatically countered with their need to abide by the Corrupt Foreign Practices Act, but their hosts assured them that it would be they who would take care of things, not the American’s, but that the American’s should know that such a arrangement had to be entered into as they were a part of everyday life if you wanted to do business in this part of the world.

The trip was concluded with a lavish good bye dinner and further entertainment, “Asian” style. The team was in a jovial mood when they arrived back in the US and were congratulated by the CEO for their accomplishment.

Their Asian counterparts meanwhile prepared for the new pre-qualification process and asked for intensive documentation. A project team was established for the Central Asia project and earnest work began to supply their consortium partners with the necessary materials to win the pre-qualification bid. At the same time hints that certain facilitation expenses were being made to Government authorities were being relayed to the American company over the phone. But, never in writing. After a while, these vague remarks became very much clearer as their foreign partners started to talk numbers.

The US stance was the same. We cannot be involved, we don’t want to know about it.

Two months after the signing of the consortium agreement, the new pre-qualification bid was held, and their consortium failed to qualify.

Their Asian counterparts blamed them in part for not assisting them in paying up the facilitation fees, and claimed that they would have won had the size of the payment been larger! They vowed to have the pre-qualification tender cancelled and the process renewed. Which they actually managed to do! But by this time, the American company had lost faith in their partners, and having allocated resources freely against the promise of lucrative rewards, decided to withdraw from the project.

The Asian partners accused the American’s of being short sighted, inflexible, and shallow. The American’s accused the Asian’s with being untruthful, slow, and not results oriented. Both sides threatened each other with law suits and asked for damages. Lawyers wrote letters back and forth, but even they had problems communicating. The cost of litigation would have been too expensive, so both sides refrained from going to court, but wrote letters of complaint to their respective embassies.

The communication gap between the cultures played an important role in how this project went bad. Communicating across cultures can be extremely difficult. What is the beginning for one culture can be the end for another.

ATN Management Consulting offers “Cultural Leadership” coaching programs to bridge the gap between cultures and to facilitate effective communication with the aim of delivering results in the International arena.


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New Article: 5 Guidelines to Finding the Right Consultant

Five Guidelines to Finding the Right Consultant

How to find the right Consultant?

My rule of thumb for choosing a consultant is simple. I call it the Doctor test.

How does it work? When I need to go to a doctor, I research his credentials, his experience and try to learn more about him. I try to gauge how up-to-date they are, if the testing equipment is the latest etc. Once I am face to face with her, I try to determine if I am comfortable her, how he arrives at the initial prognosis. If I am treated as a client or as a statistic. Then I ask myself, would I feel comfortable allowing this person to intervene and make decisions about my health. What do I have to lose if I make the wrong decision?

The same logic should apply when you chose a consultant. Management consultants are used to intervene in your business, to solve a problem or to improve a condition.

These days there are an abundance of consultants. You meet them everywhere. If you are a business owner of manager, finding the right “consultant” who can solve your unique business problem might be difficult. So, how do you find the right consultant with the right set of skills, expertise and experience to match your businesses needs?

1. Do you really need a consultant?
Based on your need, do you need a consultant, or are you seeking business advice, or are you in need of board level oversight? Or none of the above?
Each category of expertise represents a different way of answering your need.
If you need somebody to help you identify a problem and devise a solution, then a management consultant is the right person to turn to. If you are in need of general business advice, as to how to do something, then a business adviser is the right choice. If you need to have a person to work with you for a longer term, helping to oversee and give direction to your business, a shadow or alternative board level adviser may be needed. If the solution to the problem that you have is obvious, and you are sure it is the right solution you may need to bring in outside contractor to just help you with the implementation.

2. Define your improved condition, or where you want to be after the work is done
Where do you want to be after the consultant has finished her job? Let’s say you want to increase profitability and market share. How will you measure success? How will you get there, and is the target really the real target?

3. Find a consultant that understands you
Find a consultant that walks through your door with an open mind. There are many consultants out there that have their own rigid standard operating procedures manuals that they cannot deviate from. They are like a one trick pony that can only perform that one trick. But your business is unique, your business model is unique and your key success factors are unique.

Find a consultant that can produce a tailor made solution to your unique business needs. How? A good starting point is to find a consultant that listens to you and offers solutions once all relevant data has been gathered, the necessary information regarding your business has been compiled, industry and economy trends have been analyzed.

4. Give credit where credit is due
So now that you have researched a number of potential candidates, there are a number of consultants that you have hand picked. They may look equally qualified. You may like the experience of one, the dynamic web page presentation of the other, the general “feeling” of the third.

In choosing the right person, remember my Doctor test. What is the professional level of achievement the Doctor/consultant has achieved? Do they have a postgraduate degree? Is he active in professional associations or industry groups? Are they certified? (A certified management consultant is an individual who has attained his CMC (Certified Management Consultant) designation, awarded by the Institute of Management Consultants, awarded for outstanding professionalism, experience and consulting ethics)

Regarding titles. Titles in general are good. But for business, try not to go too “academic”. Some of the PhD’s may be excellent in their natural habitat, but when it comes to intervening in complex business problems, and coming up with practical, actionable, cost efficient solutions they may not be the best pick.

5. Work with your consultant
Try and provide the consultant with all the information that he needs and give him freedom of movement in your premises. Relay to the consultant, your needs, your expectations, and your worries. Brainstorm with the consultant. Make sure they fully understand your problem. In the intervention stage, make sure that you are involved at the critical stages. Make sure that your managers and employees do not try to derail the process by trying to pursue their own “old” agendas.

General Tips to get the most out of the management consulting process

Below are a number of suggestions to get the most out of the management consulting process. If used well, the management consultant will bring to the company, valuable insights and will build value and wealth for your business.

• Always use the “we” word.
• Always keep an open mind
• Always try to learn from best practices knowledge of other industries the management consultant will bring with him
• Always remember that the consultant is in the same boat with you.

• Never say “Never”
• Never say “We already tried that”
• Never say “That won’t work”
• Never say” We are too small/big for that”


ATN Management Consulting LLC

Email : info@atnconsulting.com

PMB 168, 344 Grove Street, Jersey City, 07302 NJ - USA

Tel:(201) 915 - 9850 Fax:(201) 915 - 9851


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Feb 22, 2017

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Smart Tips For Finding Tips

What the Expectations of SEO Services Should Be

SEO is the acronym for search engine optimization. Search engine optimization can be utilized by a service provider to increase the number of website visitors. High ranking placements in the search results page ensures that this number is increased. Accessibility of a site to a search engine is ensured by this service. Also improved is the probability of the page being ranked highly by the search engine.

One should look for a reputable company when choosing SEO agencies. The SEO Company that comes first by simply searching on the web is the best. For this reason, for it to be the first to appear on the result page it must have performed highly. The best need not to be ranked here it is important to note. A great retention of clients is an attribute of a good company. The clients are always satisfied with the services offered. These companies consistently do great work and are in high demand. Out of their great work they get referrals and this explains why they don’t have to appear on search engines. These companies are usually overwhelmed with clients all the time because clients refer others to them. They make plenty of money and they are basically busy and thus they don’t spend time optimizing their own website.

SEO companies that cannot offer information should not be chosen. An agency cannot be trusted if they cannot tell you how they plan on doing the specific job you give them. SEO is a very open field. Therefore to choose a SEO, one should set goals that are needed to be achieved by the services. There are good and bad goals. One should list at least three to five agencies to choose from after setting goals. Creating a list requires a source of the information. Being the source are; friends, personal and professional networks. Industry insiders and similar non-competitive companies should offer the required information.

One should choose SEO companies based on the trust that one has established with a company. One should choose that company if they hear a great referral and they trust the referral source. That it takes time is what one should keep in mind when going through the list of SEO agencies. Always the best is a monthly retainer. SEO changes because the field is full of competition and one rankings too change. Not all SEO services are created equal. One that clearly defines its scope and educates you is what should be found. A SEO is important and should be done because the point of the website is to improve business. In comparison a SEO service provider is better than doing the thing personally. One will rarely emerge as the top if they decide to do it on their own.

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Feb 22, 2017

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Study: My Understanding of Sites

Reasons for Using WordPress. Perhaps you have always wanted to design a website but then you do not have the skills.Do not worry as WordPress has got your back.As a business owner, you always need to consult with your web developer whenever you need to change or add details on your website. WordPress is easy to use and access. With its various themes, you will be guided on how to go about it. Before WordPress came, everyone had to deal with the developer even long after they are done with the web design, even to change the smallest details, one couldn’t do it on their own, so every time your called developer you had to pay them. With WordPress created websites, they are accessible from any kind of screen or browser as long as you have proper internet connection. WordPress, enables you to easily add so many plug-ins on your website as long as they don’t conflict.These days most websites have a video or audio icon on them. This means that there is improved time management since you can have an entire weeks schedule and it will be updated to your website the date and time that you have indicated. The link adding happens on your control panel. Most people look for websites that once they are done reading through your website or watching videos, they can then say something about it, you also feel nice getting feedback from your viewers.
Study: My Understanding of Sites
This means that website created using WordPress are more secure than any other website, always inquire from your developer whether they have WordPress software, and if they don’t recommend it to them. With WordPress however, the software creates websites that are already optimized, either to Bing or Microsoft Network (MSN), so you do not have to worry that your website will not be seen by search engines.
The Essentials of Sites – Breaking Down the Basics
People create websites so that they can be able to market their products, services or even themselves.Allowing you to have eye catching headlines on your website or blog, WordPress has made it easy for people to become more curious with the headlines they get on your website. Unlike other website software where you have to pay a developer to help you crack it, WordPress is absolutely free and comes with unlimited validity.If you have any troubleshooting problems, there are a large number of people using WordPress who are ready to help. Better still, more people are embracing this technology with open arms.

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Feb 21, 2017

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6 Facts About Activities Everyone Thinks Are True

On the Sudden Growth in the Popularity of eSports When you see a stadium full of enthusiastic fans, you can no longer assume that they are there to watch professional sports stars. You may also find professional gamers, donning their headsets and taking part in video game competitions known as eSports. In little more than two decades, eSports has grown from its roots in local arcade game competitions into a competitive event that is the equal of many types of organized sporting events in terms of interest and attendance. Just like traditional sports, this level of audience interest has brought in major sponsors and even network television coverage. There has been some amount debate as to whether or not eSports actually qualifies as a sporting event. Traditionalists claim that the virtual aspect of the competition makes it impossible to call eSports a real sport. Others would claim that eSports is actually just as skill-based as any other sport. Those who participate in eSports competition must have extremely fast reflexes and be able to command amazing hand-eye coordination. Gamers must also be extremely knowledgeable about the games they are playing. Does it really matter whether or not eSports actually qualifies as a real sport? Major league eSports competitions actually draw a number of online viewers that exceeds the viewership of many other major professional sports. Gaming channels on Youtube actually have more followers than any other type with the exception of music channels. When you have viewing audiences rivaling the most popular professional sports, you can bet that eSports will continue to grow in popularity in the future.
Getting Creative With Sports Advice
Many people who are unfamiliar with eSports may be wondering what an eSports competition looks like. In an eSports competition the gaming is facilitated by video gaming systems. The game itself is broadcast throughout the facility on large screen monitors that can be viewed by the entire audience. Generally, on the monitors, eSports is broadcast in split screen fashion, with the gaming field that the participant sees taking up the larger portion of the screen, with the participants inset at the bottom or top of the screen.
Practical and Helpful Tips: Sports
Many people have pretty stereotyped views of what gaming competitions may look like. Instead of propagating stereotypes of gamers wearing headsets, chugging energy drinks, it is better to tune in and watch some eSports competition to see why so many people are interested in this growing phenomenon. Already eSports competitions are extremely popular, and they are still growing in popularity. Those who are interested in learning more about eSports competition should start out by watching eSports events online. Online eSports TV channels, like DingIt TV, offer people a detailed view of this eSports competitions. To get started, all you have to do is search the Internet for more information about eSports.

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Feb 21, 2017

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Finding Ways To Keep Up With Entertainment

How to Find Great eSports Streaming eSports are among the most exciting and popular spectator events around. In a world dominated by spectator sports, eSports gaming competitions are quickly drawing crowds that rival even the most popular sports. Matches among the leading eSports competitors are broadcast on TV and streamed live online all around the world. If you are interested in gaming and love to watch people play who are especially skilled, you have to check eSports broadcasts. eSports first rose in prominence in Korea and other Asian countries where it is considered to be one the most important spectator events. The largest fan bases in the sport can be found in Korea, as well as the largest audiences for major eSports events. While it is true that gaming competitions were popular during the 1990’s, technological constraints did not allow them to achieve the kind of popularity they have today. However, thanks to the sudden growth in global communications technologies beginning around the year 2000, gaming competitions became less local and more of a world wide phenomenon. Today you can view online gaming content in a wide variety of venues. In fact, your will find that gaming channels are among the most popular subscription channels on Youtube, number two behind music channels. However, the gaming content that you view on a gaming channel is a lot less competitive than the eSports content you will find on an eSports streaming service. The gaming channels you find on video services like Youtube are primarily for humor and entertainment as opposed to eSports streaming platforms that stream the most competitive eSports available on a daily basis.
The Essentials of Activities – The Basics
Because of the popularity of online eSports streaming platforms, like DingIt TV, audiences for eSports in North America and Asia are now beginning to rival those in Asia. Even in the United States and Europe, you will find audience attendance at eSports events that actually rivals the crowds attending professional sports events. Recently, a leading sports website reported that eSports actually attracted more viewers than any other sporting event but professional football.
Lessons Learned from Years with Sports
Recently, there has been some debate to whether or not eSports are actually real sports. Those who believe it is not actually a sport say that it depends too much on the video game to facilitate game play. However, those who support the idea of video game competitions as sports competitions recognize the great amount of skill and incredible hand-eye coordination gaming takes. The easiest way to find the best in eSports action is to search the Internet for gaming competitions being streamed online. Those who would like to learn more about eSports competitions should begin by searching the Internet for an online eSports streaming platform, like DingIt TV. To begin, the best thing you can do is search the Internet for eSports online streaming platforms.

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Feb 20, 2017

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Why not learn more about Money?

Ways of Experiencing a Fruitful Crowdfunding Event

Crowd funding has been in existence for some time now. But, it has become popular recently. You can access crowd funding from different websites and platforms. Entrepreneurs who are starting up business should take advantage of crowd funding to raise cash. The traditional methods of acquiring finances are very different from this option. On this note, you have to impress the audience in order to get funding. You are to make an appeal to the audience so as to get funds and support.

You need to come up with a strategic plan before kick starting the fundraising project. Once you get the required funding, make sure that your project kicks off. This means bringing together your designs, team and strategy.
There is a need of building up on an audience and fan base as you proceed with planning and creating strategies. You are after numbers and hence using social media would be the most convenient means of reaching your goal. You are also at the advantage of reaching out to people from all over the world.

You require to prepare people psychologically on when the project will be taking place. Come up with an exciting tactic that will leave the audience wanting to witness the crowd funding project.
What Has Changed Recently With Money?

You should always recall that the audience will be you crowd funding. Once they get on board and support your idea, they will be the first consumers too. While using this strategy, note that the products are created once the funding issue is done. It would therefore be wise to keep on communicating with your fans even after the fundraising. Most importantly, let the audience know when they will finally have access to the product.
Money – Getting Started & Next Steps

Begin by listing down the foundation of your speech. Creativity is of the essence on this matter. The main aspect you want to gain from the speech are being able to engage the audience and appeal to them as well. Once you manage to capture their attention through the header and the introduction sentences, you are good to go.

You are advised to stick to your story. Give a brief history what of what motivated you to build up on your idea. Let the audience b aware of the challenges you have been facing. You can opt to use humor though you have to be tactful about it.

You should think of a video once you have finished the written piece. There are those who prefer to watch as opposed to reading and hence a video would create a good impact. Note that the optimal length of the video should be around three minutes.

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Feb 20, 2017

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How I Achieved Maximum Success with Diving

Tips On How To Buy The Ideal Scuba Mask.

It will be important to consider several decisions when it comes to buying a scuba mask. Ensure that you will be able to familiarize yourself with the mask first before you get to buy it. In that case you will be able to know which one suits you best. With that here are some of the given factors which will need to be considered in the given case.

Either buying or renting the masks is one of the problems that the divers have to deal with in this case. In diving you will find that owning your equipment will be the ideal way to do it that will be as well as the mask. That way you will be able to get the one that fits you well and suits your style and preferences. In many cases you will find that when dealing with the rentals, they will not always come in the way you would want to have you like. The only time the rentals would come in handy is when you find that a person has forgotten to carry theirs and they need to go for diving.

The market will give you a variety of scuba masks as well as the swim masks. You will find that they are made differently and the two cannot be confused with each other. You will find that the scuba masks are made in such a way that they are able to sustain the pressure that comes with diving unlike the swim masks.

You will find that they will tend to have a very strong tempered glass for that purpose which is not the case with the swim mask. It will be important to consider a case where the air mask will be meant for the balancing of the pressure under the water. This are very important features that any diver should look for in a scuba mask which will not be the case found in a swim mask.

Consider how well the mask will be able to fit in this case. When you get the skirt wrapped around you then you will find that there are no gaps available in such a case. When you get an ill fitting mask you will find that the water will be able to flow inside very easily which can lead to choking and drowning in other cases. That is why you have to look for a store that they give the fitting measurements for their customers before the buy. When you look at the mask in this case you will find that the pool is a good start to ensure that it will be right to use in large water bodies.

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Feb 20, 2017

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Interesting Research on Resources – What No One Ever Told You

The Advantages Of A Hoseless Dive Computer

A hoseless dive PC is a remote and air facilitated compass which is planned for bouncing while considering an extension or lessening in pneumatic drive as an individual is diving. There are a few focal points that are joined by the utilization of a hoseless plunge PC, for example, the PC permits following of the decompression status as it anticipates decompression infection in jumpers this is on account of it tracks the nitrogen levels in the body of a jumper by controlling the measure of nitrogen admission and out take in the jumper as it is critical to likewise guarantee that the jumper gets great quality air as they are making a plunge the ocean.

It also allows an individual to spend more time under water this is because it has a maximum number of feet that the diver can be able to dive deep and it also limits the period of time the individual will be in the water as this often helps prevent decompression sickness in an individual.

Bounce PCs also help in giving accurate time and significance recordings when appeared differently in relation to the conventional strategy for figuring the significance and time that the jumper spends in water as it was much of the time off course, yet the usage of the dive PC progresses exact estimations and meanwhile it in like manner ensures that there are no more dive table bumbles this is in light of the fact that hop PCs actually plays out each one of the considers for the decompression status of the jumper and besides register the decompression time and the rooftop significance this is just in case an individual encounters a decompression.

The dive computer also has accent rate indicators which often indicate to the diver the rate at which they are supposed to ascend this is because divers are taught on how to ascend slowly so that they do not exceed their set maximum ascend rate this is because if they do so they may suffer from decompression sickness and it also gives the diver a warning in the event where they are ascending at a fast rate than they are supposed to.

Hoseless bounce PCs are in like manner known to consider a decrease in weight when an individual ascensions to shallow profundities and thusly an individual can have the ability to know the rate at which they ought to ascend on to the surface of the water and this is frequently seen as more exact when stood out from standard tables which are thought to be less correct.

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